If you love something, set it free

About a month ago, we noticed a new resident in the farmyard at the museum. After some encouragement from Animal keepers with food and calming voices, Keeper Cassidy was able to snag our new visitor. This was no ordinary pigeon as evidenced by his ankle jewelry. Keepers Jill and Katy were able to trace his or her registration numbers at a racing pigeon website and find out that our new resident was a racing pigeon that left Danville, Virginia en route to Hickory, NC. Obviously, the pigeon wandered a little off course.

We were encouraged by the pigeon’s owner to release the bird on a nice day, a few miles from the museum. As you can see in the video I used proper pigeon release protocol! Even though Katy lost track of him with the camera, I watched him fly off over the horizon.

Perhaps not surprisingly, the pigeon opted for the shorter route and flew back to the museum within 24 hours. You can see on the map below what a straight line path back to the museum would look like. With a flying speed of around 30 mph, the pigeon probably had no trouble making it back to the farmyard before nightfall.

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Stay tuned for more pigeon updates as we try to get the pigeon back home.

In the mean time, what should we call the pigeon? Keeper Jill calls him Pigey (with “j” sound). I like Homer, since it is a homing pigeon. Please submit your favorite name in the comments section.

6 responses to If you love something, set it free

  1. Leslie says:

    I think Homer is good, especially since this pigeon has traveled his own odyssey.

  2. Chris says:

    I like Bert, after the world’s most famous pigeon aficionado — Bert from Sesame Street.

  3. Jill says:

    Even though Boba Fett would be the best name for ANY animal, I cant waste a great name on a bird that isnt ours. The future Boba Fett, whomever that might be must be assured to stay around a long time.Some people say the “real” Boba Fett succumbed to the Sarlac, however the real fans know the deal!

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